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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: Stuff & Nonsense  (Read 79944 times)
Swamprat
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4230 on: Jun 9th, 2011, 12:11pm »

Surprise, surprise.....


Study Finds SUV Drivers 50% Less Likely to Die in a Crash Than Those in Cars

By Richard Read
Published June 09, 2011

If you drive an SUV, you know that part of their allure is the feeling of safety they provide. Even compact SUVs can seem studier than their shorter, svelter car cousins. But studies haven't supported that impression of safety with facts -- until now.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has compiled data from auto accidents occurring on U.S. roads between 2006 and 2009. The major finding? Fatality rates for SUV drivers were significantly lower than for drivers of other models. How significantly? About 50%.

Before you rush out to junk that midsize sedan, though, you should know a few things:

1. The IIHS study attributes much of the SUV segment's improvement to the widespread availability of electronic stability control (ESC). Before that development came along, top-heavy SUVs were more prone to roll over in collisions, which largely negated their safety benefits of size and weight.

2. The study only looked at vehicles from the 2005 - 2008 model years. The data implies that vehicles from other years may fare similarly well, but only if they have ESC. (By 2008, ESC had become standard equipment on 96% of all SUVs.)

3. Not all cars performed poorly. Luxury vehicles seemed to do especially well. In fact, the best performing ride of all was the Audi A6, followed in the #2 spot by the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. Neither was associated with any fatalities during the study period.

Not surprisingly, the worst performers were cars that fell into the IIHS's "mini" car category, like the Chevrolet Aveo and the Kia Rio. (Only "mini" sports cars fared worse.) There were also a few pickups on the bottom rungs -- namely, the Nissan Titan, Chevrolet Colorado and Ford Ranger. That could be because as of 2008, ESC came standard on just 11% of pickups.

At the top of the scale, "large" SUVs like the Nissan Armada and Land Rover LR3 performed slightly better than "very large" models like the Chevy Suburban. In all, seven models -- the Audi A6, Mercedes E-Class, Toyota Sienna, Ford Edge, Nissan Armada, Land Rover Range Rover Sport, and Land Rover LR3 -- had no fatalities at all.

Read more: http://www.thecarconnection.com/news/1061304_its-official-suvs-are-safer-than-cars-well-mostly#ixzz1OnYKffpa
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4231 on: Jun 9th, 2011, 3:33pm »

"3. Not all cars performed poorly. Luxury vehicles seemed to do especially well. In fact, the best performing ride of all was the Audi A6,
followed in the #2 spot by the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. Neither was associated with any fatalities during the study period."


I'll take a Mercedes-Benz please. grin





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« Reply #4232 on: Jun 9th, 2011, 3:36pm »

The Northern Light

Cherry Point meeting draws hundreds
Published on Thu, Jun 9, 2011
by Jeremy Schwartz

A Bellingham meeting held to discuss the proposed Cherry Point shipping terminal drew an overflow crowd to the city’s main courthouse. Bellingham mayor Dan Pike called the June 1 listening session to solicit public input on the proposal.

About 250 people packed the seats in the courtroom to voice their opinion on what environmental, health and transportation impacts should be considered during the permitting process for the Gateway Pacific Terminal. Another 80 or so people were left outside the meeting after Bellingham fire officials prevented them from entering due to safety concerns.

“The reason we’re not using the balcony is because it’s not structurally sound,” Bellingham mayor Dan Pike said in response to questions from the crowd on why the balcony seating could not be used.

Pike made it clear that the meeting was not an official scoping public hearing and that the city has no regulatory control over the project. Whatcom County has tentatively scheduled scoping hearings for late July.

Comments at the meeting mostly opposed the terminal with applause emanating from the crowd after particularly impassioned input, though meeting moderator Linda Stewart discouraged applause at the start of the public comment period.

Concerns focused on the impacts of coal, one of the main commodities the terminal is slated to handle. Speakers addressed everything from the possibility of coal dust filling the air as coal trains rumble through Bellingham to the transportation snarls the mile-long trains could cause. Many also spoke out about the dangers of coal as an energy source and maintained coal should not be burned at all, much less shipped to Asian markets via the proposed terminal.

“We won’t be able to brag about Bellingham’s air quality after coal trains start coming through,” Bellingham resident Dan Hood said.

Other members of the public said the EIS should include areas outside of Bellingham and even the environmental impacts of power plants in China burning coal shipped through the terminal. Birch Bay resident Ellie Breedlove said the herring populations that call Cherry Point home should be one of the main concerns.

More than a few Bellingham residents encouraged organized protests and boycotts if the terminal were approved. Some speakers offered no suggestions for the EIS at all.

“We need to start thinking about coordinated, ongoing civil disobedience in every town along the [trains’] route,” said one Bellingham resident, drawing applause from the crowd.

Few proponents of the terminal made comments and those who did step up to the microphone got no applause and sometimes boos from the crowd. Bellingham resident Chris Johnson thanked Pike for organizing the meeting and said he is looking forward to the EIS so he can learn the facts and not be subjected to scare tactics. Johnson added that coal trains have been traveling through Bellingham for decades with no major health impacts.

The room’s harshest responses were saved for Northwest Washington Labor Council president emeritus David Warren, one of the terminal’s strongest supporters. Warren maintained that the terminal would only operate under the strictest environmental regulations and that jobs created from its construction and operation would help the county’s lagging economy.

Warren said he was disappointed to see so many county residents turn their back on the unemployed, which drew shouts of disapproval from the crowd. After his three-minute comment limit passed, Warren continued to try to make a point but was quickly shouted down by the crowd.

The project has inspired opposition ever since Seattle-based SSA Marine announced its plans to revive the long-stalled Gateway Pacific Terminal project in February. Soon afterward, SSA Marine announced it had signed a contract with Peabody Energy, one of the world’s largest energy companies, to ship 24 million tons of coal through the terminal from Peabody’s mines in Wyoming.

The terminal, able to receive 250,000-ton bulk transport ships, would sit on the shoreline between the Alcoa Intalco aluminum smelter and the BP refinery. If the project is approved, construction is slated to start in 2013 and last until 2015.


Additional comments on the terminal can be emailed to mayorsoffice@cob.org. Audio of the meeting can be found at here: http://www.cob.org/features/2011-06-02-gateway.aspx

http://www.thenorthernlight.com/news/article.exm/2011-06-09_cherry_point_meeting_draws_hundreds

Crystal


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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4233 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 12:39am »

A number of months ago, an Australian news corporation asked to view the Australian government's Unidentified Flying Object records. However, the Australian Department of Defense wasn't able to fulfill the request. Nearly all the files had vanished by the time the government had replied. Here is the proof: Nearly all Australian UFO files have gone missing, newsytype.com.
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4234 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 04:24am »

on Jun 8th, 2011, 5:04pm, WingsofCrystal wrote:
Amen!!!!! grin

I think this is about as good as you are going to get on that score:

http://www.amazon.com/X-Files-Fight-Future-Blythe-Danner/dp/B0007X7044/ref=sr_1_3?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1307570723&sr=1-3

Crystal


Hey WoC!

I believe this is closer wink:

http://www.amazon.com/X-Files-Want-Believe-Single-Disc/dp/B001FACH7S/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&qid=1307697944&sr=8-14

I'm still watching through my super box set! I wish people at school watched the show sad.
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4235 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 07:05am »

on Jun 10th, 2011, 12:39am, warrengreen wrote:
A number of months ago, an Australian news corporation asked to view the Australian government's Unidentified Flying Object records. However, the Australian Department of Defense wasn't able to fulfill the request. Nearly all the files had vanished by the time the government had replied. Here is the proof: Nearly all Australian UFO files have gone missing, newsytype.com.


Good morning warrengreen and Welcome.
Thank you for that article.
Crystal
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« Reply #4236 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 07:11am »

on Jun 10th, 2011, 04:24am, Cloak519 wrote:
Hey WoC!

I believe this is closer wink:

http://www.amazon.com/X-Files-Want-Believe-Single-Disc/dp/B001FACH7S/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&qid=1307697944&sr=8-14

I'm still watching through my super box set! I wish people at school watched the show sad.


Hey Cloak519,

Yep, that one is closer to season 10. grin

Sometimes the people around you just don't get it. What can you do?

Maybe these would help?

http://cgi.ebay.com/X-FILES-action-figure-/230632036819?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item35b2bd99d3

http://cgi.ebay.com/X-FILES-action-figure-SCULLY-/230632039111?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item35b2bda2c7

Crystal
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« Reply #4237 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 07:16am »

New York Times

June 9, 2011
Ex-N.S.A. Aide Gains Plea Deal in Leak Case; Setback to U.S.
By SCOTT SHANE

WASHINGTON — A former spy agency employee agreed late Thursday to plead guilty to a minor charge in a highly publicized leak prosecution, undercutting the Obama administration’s unusual campaign to prosecute government officials who disclose classified information to the press.

The National Security Agency official, Thomas A. Drake, had faced a possible 35 years in prison if convicted on felony charges under the Espionage Act. Instead, he agreed to admit to a misdemeanor of misusing the agency’s computer system by providing “official N.S.A. information” to an unauthorized person, a reporter for The Baltimore Sun. Prosecutors said in the written plea agreement that they would not oppose a sentence under which Mr. Drake would serve no time.

A formal plea hearing was set for Friday morning in Baltimore. The presiding judge, Richard D. Bennett of the district court, could impose a sentence of up to a year in prison. But legal experts said it would be highly unusual to impose a prison term when the Justice Department was not seeking incarceration.

The deal represented the almost complete collapse of the government’s effort to make an example of Mr. Drake, who was charged last year in a 10-count indictment that accused him of obstructing justice and lying to investigators. It is uncertain whether the outcome will influence the handling of three pending leak cases or others still under investigation.

The case against Mr. Drake is among five such prosecutions for disclosures to the news media brought since President Obama took office in 2009: one each against defendants from the National Security Agency, the C.I.A., the F.B.I., the military and the State Department. In the past, such prosecutions have been extremely rare — three or four in history, depending on how they are counted, and never more than one under any other president.

Officials say they have been prompted by a bipartisan belief in Congress and in both the George W. Bush and Obama administrations that leaks were getting out of hand.

The flurry of criminal cases has led to both praise and criticism for Mr. Obama, who entered office promising unprecedented transparency but in less than three years in office has far outdone the security-minded Bush administration in pursuing leaks. Some political analysts say Mr. Obama’s liberal credentials may give him political cover for the crackdown.

The Drake case was seen as a test of the tougher line against unauthorized disclosures. But news media coverage of the charges against Mr. Drake, 54, an introspective computer specialist, has highlighted his motivation for sharing information about N.S.A. technology with a reporter for The Baltimore Sun in 2006 and 2007: the agency was rejecting a $3 million in-house program called ThinThread in favor of a $1-billion-plus contractor-run program called Trailblazer. His supporters have portrayed him as a diligent public servant who was trying to save taxpayers’ money and strengthen national security, not damage it.

To make it easier to convict him, prosecutors shifted strategies last year and decided to charge him not with giving information to the Sun reporter, Siobhan Gorman, now at The Wall Street Journal, but with illegally holding classified documents at home.

But after Judge Bennett ruled last week that the government would have to show some of the allegedly classified material to the jury, prosecutors on Sunday withdrew four of the documents and redacted information from two others about “N.S.A.’s targeting of a particular telecommunications technology.”

That undermined much of the case, leading prosecutors to make a series of last-minute plea offers. Friends said Mr. Drake resisted during long hours of negotiations because he did not want to admit to a crime, however minor, that he believed he had not committed.

Mr. Drake’s lawyers, James Wyda and Deborah Boardman of the federal public defender’s office, declined to comment. But Jesselyn A. Radack, a lawyer for the nonprofit Government Accountability Project who had rallied support for Mr. Drake, hailed the outcome.

“This is a victory for national security whistle-blowers and against corruption inside the intelligence agencies, she said. “No public servant should face 35 years in prison for telling the truth.”

Matthew A. Miller, a spokesman for the Justice Department, declined to comment on the Drake case but said the prosecutions were based strictly on facts uncovered in investigations, some of which have lasted for several years.

“These are tough cases by their nature,” Mr. Miller said. “But it’s an important principle that people who have access to classified information follow the law and the agreements they have signed to protect that information.” He denied that the prosecutions were designed to deter legitimate whistle-blowing.

N.S.A., based at Fort Meade in Maryland, is the largest American intelligence agency and intercepts communications, including phone calls and e-mails. Employees have joked for decades about its hypersecrecy, saying the initials stand for “No Such Agency” or “Never Say Anything.”

Perhaps the most hotly debated of the other leak cases is the military prosecution of Pfc. Bradley E. Manning, accused of passing hundreds of thousands of military and State Department documents to WikiLeaks. In addition, the Justice Department is still investigating Julian Assange, the group’s founder, and his associates. There has never been a successful prosecution of a nongovernment employee for disseminating classified information, as opposed to leaking it. Press advocates generally believe that such a conviction would set a dangerous precedent for criminalizing the publication of government secrets.

In other cases, an F.B.I. translator, Shamai Leibowitz, was sentenced to 20 months last year for disclosing classified information to a blogger; Stephen Kim, a State Department expert on North Korea, is accused of disclosing secrets to Fox News; and Jeffrey A. Sterling, a former C.I.A. officer, is awaiting trial accused of sharing classified information on intelligence operations against Iran to James Risen for a 2006 book.

The Sterling case reflects the administration’s aggressive approach to leak cases. Last fall, prosecutors subpoenaed a lawyer for Mr. Sterling, Mark S. Zaid, to testify to a grand jury investigating his client, a move Mr. Zaid called “not improper but extraordinary.” Mr. Risen, a New York Times reporter who successfully fought a subpoena during the investigation of Mr. Sterling, has been subpoenaed again for the trial and is fighting the subpoena.

Beyond the prosecutions, the Obama administration has been entangled in other perplexing disputes over classified information. Last September, the Defense Department spent $47,300 to buy and destroy the entire first printing of an intelligence officer’s Afghanistan war memoir, saying it contained secrets.

In April, the Justice Department warned lawyers for Guantánamo detainees that they could not read or discuss publicly military documents published by WikiLeaks describing their clients, even though the documents are freely available on the Web.


http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/10/us/10leak.html?_r=1&hp

Crystal
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« Reply #4238 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 07:19am »

Washington Post

High command quits Gingrich campaign
By Karen Tumulty and Chris Cillizza
Published: June 9

Less than a month after one of the most calamitous political launches in recent memory, former House speaker Newt Gingrich’s campaign for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination imploded Thursday, when its top officials quit en masse.

At least 16 of the former lawmaker’s advisers, including all of his senior campaign aides, departed the fledgling operation in a major and potentially devastating shake-up. Those who left included Gingrich’s campaign manager, his spokesman, top political strategists and key operatives from crucial GOP primary states. Former Georgia governor Sonny Perdue (R), who was Gingrich’s national campaign co-chairman, also defected, to the presidential campaign of former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty (R), where a close political aide to the ex-governor is the campaign manager.

“When the campaign and the candidate disagree on the path, they’ve got to part ways,” said Rick Tyler, Gingrich’s longtime spokesman, who submitted his resignation Thursday.

In the immediate aftermath of the exodus, Gingrich pledged via a statement on Facebook to forge ahead with his candidacy.

“I am committed to running the substantive, solutions-oriented campaign I set out to run earlier this spring,” Gingrich wrote. “The campaign begins anew Sunday in Los Angeles,” where he is scheduled to give a foreign policy speech.

But it is not clear how the former Georgia lawmaker will be able to resurrect an already floundering campaign without a campaign organization. Among those who departed Thursday were campaign manager Rob Johnson, strategists Sam Dawson and Dave Carney, and South Carolina consultant Katon Dawson.

Recent political history provides some rays of optimism for a Gingrich campaign recovery. In the 2008 presidential race, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) suffered a similar staff exodus in the summer of 2007. He slowly rebuilt his campaign, won the New Hampshire primary and went on to be his party’s nominee. But it’s not clear whether Gingrich has the organization or support from the GOP establishment to pull off a similar feat. Throughout his career, Gingrich has been known as a prolific idea man who has lacked management skills.

The shake-up appears to have been prompted, at least in part, by the decision by Gingrich and his wife, Callista, to take a two-week vacation, including a Greek cruise, at a time when the presidential candidate was stumbling. The campaign claimed publicly that the trip was long-planned, but, in fact, the Gingriches’ decision to vanish at a critical moment was fiercely opposed by some of his top advisers.

The abrupt getaway also fueled doubts that Gingrich would be willing to invest in the kind of grass-roots effort — including stumping in the early primary states, where he has continued to get a warm reception — that has kept his candidacy alive so far.

Regaining his footing as a candidate in a crowded 2012 GOP field presented a difficult challenge, even before Gingrich was abandoned by his high command.

Among the former speaker’s unforced errors was a disastrous interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” in which he criticized the House GOP’s plan to overhaul Medicare as “right-wing social engineering.” The remarks were seen as a rebuke to the plan’s author, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), a rising GOP star whom many activists regard with the same kind of reverence that fueled Gingrich’s rise from the House’s back benches. Nearly every House Republican voted for the plan, and Gingrich’s comments could be used as ammunition against them.

Gingrich also defended one of the most controversial tenets of President Obama’s 2010 health-care law, which is its requirement — under court challenge by conservatives — that people be required to buy health insurance.

Gingrich’s early performance validated Republican doubts that a man who had spent his career as a partisan bomb-thrower could have the tight discipline required of a credible presidential candidate.

The early days of the former speaker’s campaign, announced on May 11, also spotlighted how difficult it would be for the thrice-married Gingrich to deflect focus from his private life.

That quandary was drawn into sharp relief on the second day of Gingrich’s first major campaign swing through Iowa, when his message was overtaken by the furor surrounding six-figure bills he had racked up on a revolving charge account at the jewelry store Tiffany & Co.

During the vacation, aides and advisers said, the former speaker was in constant contact by e-mail, soliciting advice about how to reboot his campaign. He returned this week and visited New Hampshire but was hoping the foreign policy speech before the Republican Jewish Coalition in Los Angeles on Sunday would represent a fresh start. On Monday, Gingrich is scheduled to join most of the other GOP presidential contenders for a debate in New Hampshire.

“The question is how do you reframe the campaign to assure the agenda is more the issue,” said lobbyist and former representative Bob Walker (R-Pa.), who is one of Gingrich’s closest friends. “We have to be more aggressive about pressing that agenda.”

Early drafts of Gingrich’s Sunday speech indicated that the former House member would argue that Obama’s foreign policy has amounted to “apologetic appeasement” that has weakened the country in the world, said one now-former campaign official who saw them.

It has been obvious from the start that Gingrich would have difficulty adjusting to his new role as presidential candidate.

In a series of private meetings early this year, “there were a group of us who tried to make clear what the demands of running for president would be,” Walker said. “Those were some tough conversations.”

Recognizing that it has been more than a decade since Gingrich had engaged in a political campaign, his brain trust attempted to build a combat-ready operation around the former speaker.

Longtime adviser and alter ego Joe Gaylord opted not to join the 2012 presidential effort, remaining instead with American Solutions, the far-reaching advocacy organization that Gingrich founded.

Gingrich also lured as top strategists Carney and Johnson, who had efficiently and effectively run Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s (R) successful 2010 reelection campaign. In recent days, Perry has indicated that he is mulling a presidential bid of his own.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/high-command-quits-gingrich-campaign/2011/06/09/AGNHsvNH_story.html?hpid=z1

Crystal


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« Reply #4239 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 07:32am »

Wired Danger Room

Panetta: Escalate Shadow Wars, Expand Black Ops
By Spencer Ackerman
June 9, 2011 | 5:21 pm
Categories: Terrorists, Guerillas, Pirates


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Icing Osama bin Laden? Just the beginning, once Leon Panetta makes it to the Pentagon.

At his Thursday confirmation hearing to become secretary of defense, CIA Director Panetta made a broad case for expanding the U.S. already extensive shadow wars. Now that bin Laden is dead, "we've got to keep the pressure up," Panetta urged senators. Expect a lot of drone strikes and a lot of special ops raids - some conducted by future CIA Director David Petraeus. In a lot of places.

Panetta said he wants to hit al-Qaida's nodes from Pakistan to North Africa, develop[ing] operations in each of those areas, so terrorists have "no place to escape." That means working with the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), the elite commandos that executed the raid on bin Laden's Abbotabad compound. And Panetta has some specific ideas about how that should work.

In his written responses to the Senate Armed Services Committee, Panetta endorsed a command scheme that would place select U.S. military personnel temporarily under the authority of the CIA director for the most sensitive counterterrorism operations. Panetta told the committee that it's "appropriate for the head of such department or agency [read: CIA] to direct the operations of the element providing that military support while working with the Secretary of Defense." A "significant advantage of doing so," he continued, "is that it permits the robust operational capability of the U.S. Armed Forces to be applied when needed."

That's contentious: it would put the military in the territory of performing operations that the government can legally deny all knowledge of ordering, something obviously problematic for uniformed military personnel. "A potential disadvantage," Panetta conceded, "is that the department or agency
receiving the support may not be specifically organized or equipped to direct and control operations by
military forces."

The U.S. reportedly employed that command structure in the highly exceptional case of the bin Laden raid, putting Navy SEALs under CIA Director Panetta's command. Panetta is essentially talking about lowering the standards for which JSOC gets loaned out to CIA missions, in order to finish al-Qaida off in the post-bin Laden era.

That fits his pattern at the CIA: Panetta expanded the list of targets that Predator drones could hit far beyond the seniormost al-Qaida operatives. Already, the skies above Yemen are filled with armed planes hunting terrorists a JSOC mission "closely coordinated" with the CIA, according to the New York Times.

With the U.S. growing weary of big land wars, that looks more like the counterterrorism model to expect in the coming years, with Panetta atop the Pentagon and his old CIA chair filled by Gen. David Petraeus. (Good thing Petraeus has some experience working with Special Operations Forces.) Indeed, Panetta told the committee that succeeding in Afghanistan "is dependent on knocking out al-Qaida's Pakistani safe havens" something U.S. officials have been loath to say, since it implies the Afghanistan war is focused on the wrong country. The "right country," by Panetta's logic, would be a place where the CIA and JSOC hunt.

And it's not just Pakistan, nor just Yemen: al-Qaida's "nodes" are in "Somalia, North Africa and Iraq as well," Panetta said. He even claimed a whopping 1000 al-Qaida operatives are still at large in Iraq. That dwarfs the more than 300 al-Qaida operatives in Pakistan, according to an estimate last year from Michael Leiter, the outgoing director of the National Counterterrorism Center. No wonder Panetta thinks the U.S. should stay in Iraq after 2011.

http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2011/06/panetta-escalate-shadow-wars-expand-black-ops/#more-48890

Crystal





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« Reply #4240 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 07:39am »

Telegraph


Leicester City Council was asked to explain its emergency plans to tackle a zombie invasion, in a bizarre Freedom of Information request.

By Emily Gosden
11:58AM BST
10 Jun 2011

A "concerned citizen", Robert Ainsley, lodged his query on Tuesday, asking: "Can you please let us know what provisions you have in place in the event of a zombie invasion?"

He added: "Having watched several films it is clear that preparation for such an event is poor and one that councils throughout the kingdom must prepare for."

The authority has yet to formally respond but has indicated that there are no specific references to zombies in its emergency plans.

Leicester City Council has 20 working days to answer but its head of information governance, Lynn Wyeth, took to local radio yesterday to address the issue.

She said: "We've had a few wacky ones but this one did make us laugh. It's one of those questions that you could do a one-liner saying there is nothing specifically in the emergency plan to state a response to a zombie invasion."

"But you could look at it in more depth and say, 'Which parts of the emergency plan could you apply to a zombie invasion?' - as it would have the same impact as perhaps some other disaster or attack."

She told the BBC: "If it's specifically about zombies then I would say, from my recollection of the plan... then unfortunately there's nothing in there... saying how we would respond to zombies."

Ms Wyeth said that the council was required by law to responond to all requests made under the Freedom of Information Act.

She said: "To you it might seem frivolous and a waste of time... but to different people it actually means something."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/8567867/Council-quizzed-over-zombie-invasion-plans-by-resident.html

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« Reply #4241 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 07:43am »

Deadline Hollywood

HBO's WikiLeaks Movie Taps Kathleen Kennedy To Produce, Rowan Joffe To Write
By NELLIE ANDREEVA
Thursday June 9, 2011 @ 6:00pm PDT


HBO's untitled WikiLeaks movie is taking shape, with Kathleen Kennedy and Frank Marshall coming on board as executive producers and British scribe Rowan Joffe (The American) tapped to write the script. The project, a co-production with the BBC, is based on source material that includes Raffi Khatchadourian's 2010 New Yorker article No Secrets: Julian Assange’s Mission for Total Transparency.

It will tell the story of WikiLeaks, a database run by former hacker and Internet activist Julian Assange and his operatives, whose mission is to collect and disseminate via the Internet private, secret and classified information from anonymous sources. HBO put the WikiLeaks project in development in January with Joshua Maurer and Alixandre Witlin of City Entertainment and David Stern of KippSter Entertainment executive producing. In April, Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Charles Ferguson was attached to direct the potential film and executive produce. Maurer, Witlin, Stern and Ferguson will now executive produce with Kennedy and Marshall. Audrey Marrs serves as co-exec producer and Timothy Prager as co-producer.

With a writer, director and producers locked in, HBO's TV movie is on track to beat to the screen the myriad WikiLeaks features that are in the works, including one at DreamWorks, which also is in active development.

http://www.deadline.com/2011/06/hbos-wikileaks-movie-taps-kathleen-kennedy-to-produce-rowan-joffe-to-write/

Crystal
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« Reply #4242 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 08:30am »

Huge Magnetic Bubbles May Churn at Solar System's Edge

By Mike Wall
Published June 10, 2011
Space.com

The edge of the solar system is a turbulent place, filled with a roiling sea of huge magnetic bubbles, new research suggests.
The find, made with the help of observations from NASA's venerable Voyager probes, shakes up prevailing views of the solar system's outer reaches.

"We will have to change our view of how the sun interacts with particles, fields and gases from other stars," Arik Posner, a Voyager program scientist at NASA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., told reporters Thursday.

Not smooth, but bubbly

Our sun's sphere of influence, composed of solar plasma and solar magnetic fields, is called the heliosphere. This gigantic structure is about three times wider than the orbit of Pluto. At the edge of the heliosphere lies the heliosheath, a boundary region between the solar system and interstellar space.

For decades, scientists had thought that, in the heliosheath, the sun's magnetic field curves around in a smooth, consistent arc, forming a relatively uniform structure.

But that appears not to be the case.

The twin unmanned probes Voyager 1 and Voyager 2, both launched in 1977, are currently plying different parts of the heliosheath, more than 9 billion miles (14.5 billion kilometers) from Earth. And their observations are spurring a rethink of the region.

The best explanation, according to subsequent computer models, is that the probes are flying through a frothy field of magnetic bubbles. These bubbles act as particle traps. So particle readings increase while the spacecraft are inside one, then drop when they exit.

These bubbles form as a result of the interaction between the sun's rotation and its magnetic field. As the sun spins, its magnetic field churns and twists out in the heliosheath. The folded field bunches up on itself, causing lines of magnetic force to crisscross and reconnect, forming the sea of bubbles.

Huge, sausage-shaped bubbles

The sausage-shaped bubbles are gigantic, measuring about 100 million miles (161 million km) across. And there are a lot of them.

"This entire thing is bubbly, just like the most bubbly parts of your Jacuzzi," Drake said. He added that an observer flying aboard one of the Voyagers would not be able to see the bubbles, because the gas in the area is too diffuse.

A porous shield


Astronomers had imagined that a smooth, laminar heliosheath acted as a pretty stout shield around the solar system, keeping out many fast-moving particles known as galactic cosmic rays.

Cosmic rays are a threat to astronauts, as they can slam into spaceflyers' cells and damage their DNA. Earth's atmosphere attenuates cosmic rays, shielding folks on the ground from their worst effects.

However, the sea of bubbles likely acts more like a membrane than a shield, researchers said, potentially letting some of these particles zip through into the inner solar system. But scientists don't fully understand how the membrane works and just what is able to pass through it.

The bubbles may trap cosmic rays for a while, forcing them to bounce around like pinballs before they finally escape.

Voyager 1 is now about 11 billion miles (17.7 billion kilometers) from Earth, while Voyager 2 is about 9 billion miles (14.5 billion km) away. Voyager 1 is the most far-flung human-made object in the universe.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/06/10/huge-magnetic-bubbles-may-churn-at-solar-systems-edge/#ixzz1OsZ9Gi00
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« Reply #4243 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 10:30am »

Received this one via e-mail. It is true per the Snopes reference.


PING Golf Clubs

This one really is true. What a nice gesture for the company to make.

You can check it out yourself at http://www.snopes.com/politics/military/ping.asp.

On Monday, I played the Disney, Lake Buena Vista course. As usual the starters matched me with three other players. After a few holes we began to get to know each other a bit.. One fellow was rather young and had his wife riding along in the golf cart with him. I noticed that his golf bag had his name on it and after closer inspection, it also said "wounded war veterans". When I had my first chance to chat with him I asked him about the bag. His response was simply that it was a gift. I then asked if he was wounded and he said yes. When I asked more about his injury, his response was "I'd rather not talk about it, sir".

Over a few holes I learned that he had spent the last 15 months in an army rehabilitation hospital in San Antonio Texas . His wife moved there to be with him and he was released from the hospital in September. He was a rather quiet fellow; however, he did say that he wanted to get good at golf. We had a nice round and as we became a bit more familiar I asked him about the a brand new set of Ping woods and irons he was playing. Some looked like they had never been hit. His response was simple. He said that this round was the first full round he had played with these clubs.

Later in the round he told me the following. As part of the discharge process from the rehabilitation hospital, Ping comes in and provides three days of golf instruction, followed by club fitting. Upon discharge from the hospital, Ping gives each of the discharged veterans, generally about 40 soldiers, a brand new set of custom fitted clubs along with the impressive golf bags.

The fellow I met was named Ben Woods and he looked me in the eye and said that being fitted for those clubs was one of the best things that ever happened to him and he was determined to learn to play golf well enough to deserve the gift Ping had given him. Ben is now out of the service, medically discharged just a month ago.

It is to their credit that Ping does not advertise this program. I think all golfers, perhaps all Americans, should know about Ping 's generosity.
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #4244 on: Jun 10th, 2011, 3:58pm »

"The twin unmanned probes Voyager 1 and Voyager 2, both launched in 1977, are currently plying different parts of the heliosheath, more than 9 billion miles (14.5 billion kilometers) from Earth. And their observations are spurring a rethink of the region.

The best explanation, according to subsequent computer models, is that the probes are flying through a frothy field of magnetic bubbles. These bubbles act as particle traps. So particle readings increase while the spacecraft are inside one, then drop when they exit.

These bubbles form as a result of the interaction between the sun's rotation and its magnetic field. As the sun spins, its magnetic field churns and twists out in the heliosheath. The folded field bunches up on itself, causing lines of magnetic force to crisscross and reconnect, forming the sea of bubbles."



Thanks Swamprat, amazing and wonderful.
Crystal
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